The Week That Was: Sun Yang’s Anti-Doping Case Pushed Back to “Late October”

Sun Yang's anti-doping hearing was put back to late October and will remain public. Photo Courtesy: Becca Wyant

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Even with no major senior international meets in the last week, there were still some big headlines in the sport of swimming with Great Britain’s James Guy making a coaching change, and USA’s Becca Mann becoming the first to cross the Maui Nui Triple Channel swim. The biggest meet of the week was the FINA World Junior Swimming Championships in Budapest, Hungary with some of the biggest up-and-coming stars in the sport on display for six days. Three individual world junior records and five relay records were broken at the meet with Australia’s Lani Pallister and Russia’s Andrei Minakov walking away as swimmers of the meet.

Read about the five biggest stories from the past week in the week that was.

The Week That Was #5: Becca Mann Crosses Maui Nui Triple Channel Swim


Map of Becca Mann’s 64 Kilometer swim that took her 22 hours. Photo Courtesy: Becca Mann

At approximately 4:55pm EST on Monday, August 19, Becca Mann became the first person in history to complete the historic Maui Rui Triple Channel swim. The course entails 64 kilometers from Maui to Molokai to Lanai, then back to Maui.

The completion took Mann approximately 22 hours and was tracked throughout. The trip to Molokai took Mann approximately four hours, while the swim to Lanai took just under eleven. Her final channel back to Maui took about six more hours. Updates were also provided on Mann’s Instagram account throughout the swim.

The Week That Was #4: James Guy to Switch Coaches Ahead of Olympic Year


Photo Courtesy: Becca Wyant

James Guy, the 2015 World 200m freestyle champion for Britain, is leaving his long-time coach Jol Finck to train with Dave McNulty at Bath University’s performance centre. The move is both big yet nuanced, both Finck and Guy having worked closely with and at the Bath set-up for years beyond their time at Millfield when Guy was a school boy.

Guy, who is sponsored by FINIS, took to social media today to announce:

“After 8 years of working with my Coach Jol Finck – winning European, World and Olympic Medals. I’ve decided to move on and find new energy for Tokyo 2020. It was a tough decision but I’m excited to start my new adventure into the Olympics with David McNulty!”

The Week That Was #3: Kyle Chalmers Undergoes Third Heart Surgery


Kyle Chalmers, thumbs up for a third-time-lucky outcome – Photo Courtesy: Kyle Chalmers – Instagram

Olympic champion Kyle Chalmers has his fingers crossed that “a third round of heart surgery” yesterday will kick start his second Olympic campaign for Tokyo 2020. Chalmers entered hospital just a month after his leading role for the Dolphins with his five medal haul at the recent World Championships In Gwangju, South Korea. The reigning Olympic 100m freestyle champion has undergone two previous operations to correct his supraventricular tachycardia condition – a recurrent rapid heartbeat that is normally not life-threatening.

The Week That Was #2: World Junior Records Fall in Budapest


Apostolos Papastamos celebrates a world junior record in the 400 IM. Photo Courtesy: FINA / Budapest 2019

The 2019 FINA World Junior Swimming Championships from Budapest came to a close on Sunday with eight world junior records falling over the six day meet. Greece’s Apostolos Papastamos (pictured above), Croatia’s Franko Grgic and Spain’s Alba Vazquez Ruiz set individual records in the 400 IM and 1500 free. The United States set four world junior records in relays (men’s 4×100 free, 4×200 free, mixed 4×100 medley, 4×100 free) while Russia broke the men’s 4×100 medley relay record.

Australia’s Lani Pallister and Russia’s Andrei Minakov were honored as swimmers of the meet.

The Week That Was #1: Sun Yang Anti-Doping Controversy Case Put Back to Late October


Photo Courtesy: Becca Wyant

The Court of Arbitration for Sport hearing into a FINA Doping Panel decision to issue Sun Yang with a series of rebukes over an acrimonious encounter with anti-doping testers last September has been set back to the end of October – and the case will be the first to be heard in public since the Michelle Smith hearing of 1998.

The case has not been postponed because that would only be possible had a date for a hearing been announced. CAS’s intended date for a hearing in September was tentative, never confirmed nor published. “Late October” is now the new tentative date for the hearing.

In a statement issued last week, CAS noted that one of the parties to the case – which could be Sun and his lawyers and entourage or FINA or the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), the body challenging the Doping Panel decision to let Sun go free after the incident last year – has requested further time to prepare their case. CAS stated:

“At the parties’ request, the hearing, which will likely take place in Switzerland, will be open to the public (including the media). Full details of the arrangements for those who wish to attend the hearing will be made available once the new hearing date and location have been officially confirmed. This will be the second time in the history of CAS that a hearing is held in public. The first public hearing, which took place in 1999, was also related to the sport of swimming, in the matter Michelle Smith De Bruin v. FINA.”